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Interesting observation on Katz column

December 18, 2012

I was struck by the use of Robert Frost's "Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening" to conclude Ms. Katz's  Around Town commentary on year-end reflection in the Dec. 14 edition of the Cape Gazette.

It is indeed a beautiful poem, but, as is no doubt recognized by Ms. Katz and as with Frost's woods themselves, it is far deeper than the initial impression.

One commentator has suggested, for example, that "The theme of 'Stopping by Woods' - despite Frost's disclaimer - is the temptation of death, even suicide, symbolized by the woods that are filling up with snow on the darkest evening of the year." - Meyers, Jeffrey. "Robert Frost: A Biography." Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1996.

That is, of course, only one out of many and diverse interpretations, but a number of these have similar dark themes. See, e.g., http://www.english.illinois.edu/maps/poets/a_f/frost/woods.htm.

The Gazette's addressing of this complex poem is certainly warranted (and welcome), but its positioning immediately before Ms. Katz's "Happy Holidays" wish seemed a bit incongruous.

Bruce M. Collins
Lewes

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